New air­port ter­mi­nal in 30 years


Queen­stown Air­port is plan­ning a new ter­mi­nal and shar­ing flights with Wanaka Air­port to keep up with vis­i­tor growth.

The air­port re­leased its 30-year mas­ter plan last Tues­day.

It pre­dicts growth from 1.8 mil­lion pas­sen­ger move­ments (about 900,000 trav­ellers) a year to 6 mil­lion by 2035 and 7m by 2045.

Queen­stown Air­port Cor­po­ra­tion chief ex­ec­u­tive Colin Keel said the fore­cast de­mand was ‘‘not sus­tain­able’’ for vis­i­tors and the com­mu­nity.

How­ever, there were no plans to ex­tend op­er­at­ing hours be­yond the per­mit­ted 6am to 10pm, nor to ex­tend the run­way.

In­stead the air­port’s ca­pac­ity would be limited to 5.1m pas­sen­ger move­ments. Once ca­pac­ity was reached, the air­port would con­sider dual air­port op­er­a­tion with Wanaka Air­port.

The op­tion was con­sid­ered prefer­able to re­lo­cat­ing to a new site, but not in­cluded in the mas­ter plan as a man­age­ment lease of Wanaka Air­port was still be­ing ne­go­ti­ated with the Queen­stown Lakes Dis­trict Coun­cil, Keel said.

Three build­ing op­tions had been pro­posed for a new and big­ger ter­mi­nal, as the cur­rent ter­mi­nal’s ca­pac­ity was about 3.2m vis­i­tor move­ments.

A new ter­mi­nal to the south of the run­way could in­clude 13 plane stands and a car park­ing site off Hawthorne Dr. The devel­op­ment would re­quire the cor­po­ra­tion to pur­chase the block of land known as Lot 6. The cor­po­ra­tion is in the En­vi­ron­ment Court at­tempt­ing to com­plete a com­pul­sory ac­qui­si­tion of the block.

An­other op­tion to de­velop a new ter­mi­nal to the north of the run­way would al­low for 13 air­craft stands by the Five Mile re­tail devel­op­ment, with ad­di­tional land pur­chased for gen­eral avi­a­tion and he­li­copter precincts to the south. Land would need to be pur­chased from five dif­fer­ent land own­ers. A new taxi­way ex­ten­sion could be added also, Keel said.

The air­port was seek­ing feed­back on the mas­ter plan un­til Novem­ber 30, with com­mu­nity, busi­ness and tourism groups meet­ings be­ing held across the re­gion.

‘‘Queen­stown Air­port serves a large ge­o­graphic area and a mix of local, na­tional and in­ter­na­tional cus­tomers, so there are on­line and in­per­son op­tions avail­able to make it eas­ier to pro­vide feed­back,’’ Keel said.

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